Thyme (Thymus mongolicus Ronn), semi-shrub, oval leaves, head-shaped inflorescence, tubular bell-shaped or narrowly-bell-shaped calyx, corolla purplish red, purple or lavender, pink, flowering from July to August, small nuts nearly round Shaped or oval.
It can be used as an ingredient. It is commonly used as a spice in European cooking. It has a spicy taste and is used to add to stews, eggs, or soups.
Traditionally in Europe, thyme is considered a symbol of courage, so in the Middle Ages, it was often used as a gift to the enlisted knight.
In the Yuan Dynasty of China, there was a book called “Complete Collection of Things to Use at Home”, which remembers that it was seasoned with thyme and camel hooves.
The famous Chinese medical scientist Li Shizhen’s “Compendium of Materia Medica” records: “The taste is slightly pungent, and the natives cook lamb to eat, which is delicious.” Thyme is native to Southern Europe and is widely cultivated as a gourmet spice.
The appearance characteristics of thyme
Semi-shrub. Many stems, creeping or ascending; sterile branches emerging from the end or base of the stem, creeping or ascending, pubescent; flowering branches (1.5) 2-10 cm high, densely curved downwards or slightly flattened under the inflorescence Hair, the lower hair becomes short and sparse, with 2-4 leaf pairs, the base has the first leaves that fall off.
Leaves are ovoid, 4-10 mm long, 2-4.5 mm wide, apex obtuse or slightly acute, base wedge-shaped or tapered, whole or rare 1-2 pairs of small serrations, both sides glabrous, lateral veins 2- 3 pairs, slightly protruding underneath, glandular points somewhat obvious, petioles are obvious, the petiole near the lower part is about 1/2 of the leaf, and the upper part is shorter; the bracts are the same shape as the leaves, and the edges are ciliated in the lower 1/3.
The inflorescence is capitate, more or less flowered, and the flowers have short stalks. The calyx is tubular bell-shaped or narrowly bell-shaped, 4-4.5 mm long, sparsely pilose on the lower part, nearly glabrous on the upper part, the lower lip is longer than the upper lip or nearly equal to the upper lip, the upper lip has shorter teeth, and the teeth do not exceed 1/3 of the total length of the upper lip, Triangular, ciliate or glabrous.
Corolla purple, purple or lavender, pink, 6.5-8 mm long, sparsely pubescent, crown tube elongated, 4-5 mm long, slightly enlarged upward.
Nutlets are nearly round or oval, flattened, and smooth. Flowering from July to August.
The growth habit of thyme
Thyme likes a warm, light-loving, and dry environment. It does not have high requirements on the soil, but it grows well in well-drained lime soil.
Loose and well-drained land, facing the sun. Born in rocky mountains, slopes, valleys, ravines, roadsides, and weeds, 1100-3600 meters above sea level.
The main value of thyme
Thyme plants are relatively low, with stolons that grow along the ground surface, extending nearly horizontally.
The adventitious buds on the stem can germinate many root systems and form a very strong root network, which can effectively prevent soil erosion.
Because thyme has outstanding cold tolerance, drought tolerance, barren tolerance, resistance to diseases and insects, as well as fast growth, large flower volume, long flowering period, and pleasant fragrance;
It has become a rare and excellent ground cover plant in urban landscaping, and because of its strong resistance, wide ecological diversity, and clonal growth characteristics;
In many fragile habitats with severe soil degradation, natural dominant plant species or single superior groups can be formed, and they play an important ecological function in desertification community composition and ecological succession.
Thyme can treat many diseases, with a sweet and herb-like smell.
The medicinal records of thyme in China can be traced back to the Northern Song Dynasty. There are records in various Chinese medicine classics.
“Shaanxi Chinese Herbal Medicine” records that it can cure indigestion, general body pain, dispel wind and analgesia, abdominal distension, toothache, and cure stomach cold pain;
“Jiayou Materia Medica,” said that it is the main source of swelling and pain; “Xinjiang Handbook of Chinese Herbal Medicine” records the effects of treating colds, dispelling wind, strengthening the spleen and eliminating food, relieving cough and resolving phlegm, warming the middle and dispelling cold, and “Selected Chinese Herbal Medicines from Shaanxi, Gansu and Ningqing” Stomach relieving vomiting and clearing heat and reducing fever;
“Chinese Medicine Plant Illustrated Book” records that it has antispasmodic, expelling wind, and strengthening effects, and is mainly used for inflammation, spastic cough, whooping cough, and sore throat.
Modern medicinal use uses fresh or dry samples of the above-ground part or whole plant, which has the functions of dispelling wind and relieving pain.
The whole thyme plant has a fragrant odor. It appeared in people’s lives as a spice vegetable and nectar plant for a long time. It is one of the natural flavoring spices used by humans since ancient times.
It was first recorded in China that thyme was used as a seasoning spice in the Yuan Dynasty. When cooking seafood, meat, fish, and other foods, add a little thyme powder to remove the fishy smell and increase the flavor of the dishes;
Adding thyme to pickles and kimchi can improve their fragrance and grassy aroma. In 1970, the International Standard Organization announced that thyme can be used as a food spice.
Comparing and analyzing the nutrients in thyme and common vegetables, it was found that the content of carbohydrate, protein, vitamin C, selenium, iron, calcium, and zinc was higher than that of common vegetables;
In particular, thyme contains a large number of volatile components such as monoterpenes, which have extremely high edible nutritional value to the human body.
Thyme honey has a high concentration, a strong aroma, and a light amber color. Studies have found that thyme honey has a higher amino acid content, which is of great benefit to the human body.
Courage, you who like this flower are broad-minded, brave to face difficulties, and have a lot of self-esteem, and will not give in easily.
You believe that tomorrow will be better, make a rational analysis of everything and not be blindly optimistic.
Because of your strong self-esteem, your relationship will not be very intense, which is a type of rational communication.
In addition to its charming fragrance, thyme has a romantic and beautiful meaning-“good luck”.
The scarves given to brave knights by women in the Middle Ages in Europe are pierced with thyme, which means to bless everything.
One of the legends
There is a legend in ancient Greece that as long as a girl who thinks of spring embroider a thyme pattern on her clothes, or wear thyme on her body, it means looking for a lover and waiting for the love of the suitor.
For a shy men, as long as they drink a cup of thyme tea, I heard that they can pluck up the courage to pursue what they love.
Also known as “The Favor of Provence”. In Greek mythology, Aphrodite (the god of love and beauty) shed tears when she saw the cruelty of the Trojan War. Her tears fell into the mortal world and became the lovely leaves of thyme.
Another theory is that Troy’s tears of Helen turned into thyme drop by drop. The English word for thyme comes from Greece, which means “courage”.
A song poet in the 16th century called the scent of thyme “a paradise at dawn” because it smells fresh and charming, natural and comfortable, and pure and beautiful like heaven.
According to legend, thyme is related to the most glamorous and beautiful Princess Helen of Sparta, who caused the historic Trojan War.
In Greek mythology, thyme is Helen’s tears. Princess Helen, who is all over the country, is the daughter of Queen Rita of Sparta and the god Zeus. Because she is very beautiful, countless princes and nobles pursue her.
Helen’s adoptive father, King Spartan, in order to avoid everyone fighting for Helen, married her to the new Spartan King Menelaus and became the queen of Sparta.
Not long after the peaceful days, a handsome Trojan prince Paris came to Sparta. After seeing Queen Helen, he was deeply fascinated by her. He tried every means to get close to Helen and confided in love with her. Helen was also attracted by his handsomeness and fell in love with him unconsciously, so the two met and fled to Troy.
However, how did the two young people know that this elopement led to the ten-year Trojan War?
When Troy finally perished and Paris died in battle, Helen couldn’t help but shed crystal tears and turned into thyme on the ground. The expression of tears falling gently on her face caused many Trojan warriors to be overwhelmed and swear to protect her.
Therefore, since then, thyme has been given a symbol of courage and vitality. Women will send a sprig of thyme before their beloved samurai goes out to convey their love and encourage each other’s courage.
The girl of Sichun embroidered the thyme pattern on her clothes, or wears thyme on her body, which means looking for a lover and waiting for the suitor to show love;
Benefits of thyme
Protect the liver
Thyme has a natural aroma. It contains a large amount of oleanolic acid. This substance can directly act on the human liver to improve liver function, prevent hepatitis and cirrhosis, and promote liver cell regeneration. It can be eaten regularly. Reduce virus damage to the human liver.
Anti-inflammatory and sterilization
Thyme contains a variety of natural anti-inflammatory components, especially the high content of linalool and cymene. They can eliminate a variety of bacteria and viruses in the human body. Usually, it can be used for human oral inflammation and tracheitis. The prevention and treatment of upper respiratory tract inflammation such as pneumonia are particularly effective.
Relieve pain and itching
Analgesic and itching are also important functions of thyme. Its medicinal ingredients such as linalool and paraffin can eliminate inflammation and sterilization and can eliminate a variety of skin fungi. People usually grind thyme directly and take out the juice when people have dermatitis and eczema. Applying to the affected area can quickly reduce the itching symptoms caused by dermatitis and eczema.
Prevent high blood pressure
Thyme can prevent high blood pressure. The baicalein and apigenin contained in it are all-natural antihypertensive ingredients, and they can reduce the activity of carcinogens in the body, promote blood circulation, and improve the contraction of the heart. Not only do they often eat It can prevent high blood pressure and also play an important role in preventing cancer.
Resolve phlegm and relieve cough
Thyme contains a lot of volatile oil and some natural aromatic substances. These substances can expand the trachea and speed up the discharge of sputum. People can use it to prevent coughing and sputum. It can also be used for the treatment of human cough and asthma. The effects are very special obvious.